March 13th, 2008
12:00 PM ET
14 years ago

Obama slams McCain for reverse on tax cuts

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Obama had some sharp words for McCain on his campaign plane Thursday."] (CNN) - Barack Obama suggested Thursday John McCain reversed his position on the Bush tax cuts in order to win the Republican nomination.

Speaking with reporters on his campaign plane, Obama noted the Arizona senator was a onetime opponent to the tax cuts, and said he has since reversed his position for political reasons.

"That was how, I guess, you got your ticket punched to be the Republican nominee," he said. "But he was right then, and he's wrong now."

McCain has said he supports the tax cuts now because of the economic slowdown and the stimulus potential they offer.

Obama also said he is against the tax cuts because they are an example of a "flawed fiscal policy."

"The notion that we would pile up more mounds of debt, literally borrowing hundreds of billions of dollars to pay for tax breaks for people who don't need them and weren't even asking for them I think is unfortunate," he said. "And I think it's an example of the kinds of flawed fiscal policies that have gotten us in such a hole under this administration and a republican congress."

UPDATE: Responding to Obama's remarks, McCain said later Thursday "it’s very clear that I voted to make those tax cuts permanent on several times."

"Senator Obama has stated very clearly his desire to increase Americans’ taxes," he added. "That will be one of the great debates we have if he is the nominee of his party. He wants to raise Americans’ taxes and put more of their money into the hands of the government. I want to keep it in the wallets and purses of the American people."

- CNN's Chris Welch contributed to this report

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (130 Responses)
  1. Dian Mo

    Pelosi, stop!

    Both Clinton and Obama proposed their version of joint ticket. What is wrong with you?

    The only job for Democrits now is which version of joint ticket that you wanted. Let do the mail-in votes by every registered Democrats now. Rush! Rush!

    March 13, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  2. Breka

    Voting for Mccain is voting for Bush again. So, if Americans want the best for this country, don't vote Mccain. Except, if you want Iraq war to continue, If you want the economic situation to continue by using the country revenue to sponsor the war, if you want millions losing their homes, and if you want this country to go down the drain, dollars losing its' value, then vote for Mccain.

    But, If you want a complete change from the old establishment to a better future for United States of American, then VOTE FOR SENATOR OBAMA.

    OBAMA 08

    March 13, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  3. Insane in the Mccain

    I realized that Hillary has to attack Obama and Obama has to attack John Mccain and Mcain has to unite his party...

    WOW....this will be a great summer.

    March 13, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  4. Bison (Anchorage)

    It is nice to know that I can count on Charlotte saying something stupid and hateful in every thread. I am comforted in knowing that people as ignorant and blind as her are involved in our political process.

    March 13, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  5. brian

    Uh Charlotte from 1:09 pm. Get YOUR facts straight. What Democratic Senate Majority? A 50-50 tie when you throw in Lieberman to the Republicans.

    The fiscal policy of the last 7 years by the administration and their Republican lackeys have drove our economy off of a cliff. To continue the same behavior is reckless and dangerous. Obama is spot on.

    March 13, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  6. jhs

    Hey Obama, how is this any different from you being against the war, but after you reached the Senate, voted the SAME AS CLINTON regarding the war????? Face it, you're both (McCain & Obama) flip-floppers!

    March 13, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  7. California Independent

    Obama goes after McCain for flip-flopping? Too rich. Obama should review just a couple of his own flip-flops... flip-Nafta, flop-Iraq, flip-his Israel/Palentinian position, flop-mail-in voting (why he would co-sponsor a bill and then publicly state it's a bad idea is beyond understanding), flip-superdelegate position, flop-Griffith, flip-credit card bill......

    March 13, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  8. HP Boston

    Barack you best do your homework before you take on the real professionals! The grownups are there to help you, pay attention!

    March 13, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  9. RealityKing

    "Tax cuts are flawed fiscial policy"

    Whoomp there it is!!

    March 13, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  10. pc

    Barak Obama is 100% correct!! President Bush is a "rich man's" president and John McCain is no different. Barak Obama, President of the United States of America – 08!!!

    March 13, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  11. Wayne

    Maybe McCain is right. In economic hard times what we need is TAX CUTS FOR THE RICH. Yea. That will do it. Millionares getting richer. That will...uh..spur investment? What is he thinking..that will never work.

    March 13, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  12. Vic

    Yes, it is about time we addressed the Republicans instead of each other. Go after McCain. He is just a Bush clone. As far as tax cuts, we should just adopt a rich person and send them a check every month. I would hate for them to suffer in any way.

    March 13, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  13. RealityKing

    i. e..., tax hikes are unflawed fiscal policy..

    March 13, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  14. Tim in Canada

    They say who we are today has much to do with our upbringing. Hillary grewup as a republican, she's still one.

    March 13, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  15. Debby

    Oh brother and Obama is taking endorsements from Senators that voted for the war which he preached he was so against. You can't have it both ways Obama, you can't criticize McCain when you aren't even on the same page as your endorsers.

    CNN print this its the truth.

    March 13, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  16. Sean

    That is why I will never vote for Obama. Clearly his plan is to raise our taxes. At least McCain has now got on the right track.

    March 13, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  17. Mike

    Obama should know about reversing positions, he has done it many times. That is why he hates debates. Every debate he is called on a position he has changed on recently. Last one was public funding of the general election.

    March 13, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  18. Charlotte

    What you Obama supporters can call Hillary all kind of vile names and I can't say how stupid your guy is. LMAO

    March 13, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  19. randall

    You people that vote for Obama, do you understand politics? I just wonder sometimes

    March 13, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  20. deedee

    john mccain may have swithced positions, according to obama bin laden the teflon candidate, but at least his mccains friends arent known terrorists....

    March 13, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  21. kevin from alaska


    Obama and Clinton should just tee off on McCain and voters can decide based on that who is best equipped for the general election. Make him fight a two-front war instead of making your own party fight a two-front war.

    March 13, 2008 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  22. Ohio Dem

    Whatever Obama. You do the same thing all the time. I was for it before I was against it. No I never said that. Blah, blah, blah. You continue to blow smoke, and people continue to cling to every last word you say, even if it's lies. It doesn't matter how good of a speaker if everything you say is dishonest. The problem is, nobody calls you out on it. Well here it is, I'm calling you out. STOP LYING. I'm over Obama.

    Hillary all the way!

    March 13, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  23. Anonymous


    March 13, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  24. J.R.

    Good job Obama! Shame on you McCain. McCain is the ultimate flip-flopper. We are still in a time of war (the reason why he opposed the tax cuts initially) and now that he is the nominee he changes his mind...hypocrite! Obama/Edwards '08!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    March 13, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  25. Terry

    Way to go Obama. He is acting more presidential than any of the other remaining. He ignores Hillary and goes after John McCain which is what he should be doing. Will someone please convince Hillary to go away, if NY was smart they would not re-elect her as senator.

    March 13, 2008 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
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